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Fort Union Celebration, Williston, N.D.
Fort Union Celebration, Williston, N.D.
TitleFort Union Celebration, Williston, N.D.
Date of Original1925-07-18
DescriptionA large crowd of Native Americans and others watch an Indian ceremony during the Fort Union Celebration, Fort Union, N.D.
General SubjectAwards & ceremonies
Social life & customs
Subject (LCTGM)Crowds
Indigenous peoples
Subject (LCSH)Indians of North America
Indians of North America - Children
Indians of North America - Clothing & dress
Indians of North America - Commemoration
Indians of North America - Dwellings
Indians of North America - Government relations
Indians of North America - History
Indians of North America - Meetings
Indians of North America - Men
Indians of North America - Political activity
Indians of North America - Rites & ceremonies
Indians of North America - Social life
Indians of North America - Women
LocationFort Union (N.D.)
Item Number1-75A-19-4
Negative Number1-75A-19-4
Format of OriginalGlass negatives
Dimensions of Original2 x 3 in.
NotesTitle created by staff.
Biography/HistoryWilliam E. "Bill" Shemorry was a native of Williston, N.D. who began work in the newspaper industry as a newsboy selling the Williston Herald and the Williams County Farmers Press. In 1953, he started to publish the Williston Plains Reporter, which he operated for 25 years before selling to the Williston Herald. Shemorry then began to concentrate on his own writing and photography. In addition to writing many books on the history of Williams County, he also collected photographs of early North Dakota photographers. Shemorry was an active member of the Williston Fire Department, was Civil Defense Chief of Williams County for three years in the 1950's, and was a combat photographer in World War II. Shemorry's photograph of the discovery of oil in North Dakota on April 4, 1951 at the Clarence Iverson No. 1 is one of the most famous oil photographs ever taken, and was published in many national publications.
An estimated ten thousand people were in attendance to greet the Upper Missouri Historical expedition, which included General Hugh Scott, representatives of many historical societies, and other notable people from all parts of the United States. Eleven tribes of Indians were represented in the congress. The celebration was promoted chiefly by the Great Northern Railway, and concessions were handled by the Elks Lodge of Williston. The program included an address from General Scott, talks by several of the Indians, a flag raising, a welcome from the Upper Missouri band, Company E of Williston, a congress of Indian tribes and leaders, and performances by three other North Dakota bands. In the evening, the Indians entertained with native games and music. Games and contests continued through the next day. In addition to these activities was a rodeo and other attractions west of the Fort Union grounds. The owner of the land occupied was Frank Weinrich.
Bibliographic ReferenceWilliston Herald, 7/23/1925, p. 1; Williams County Farmers Press, 7/16/1925, p. 1;
Repository InstitutionState Historical Society of North Dakota
Repository CollectionWilliam E. (Bill) Shemorry Photograph Collection Mss 10958
Credit LineState Historical Society of North Dakota, William E. (Bill) Shemorry Photograph Collection (1-75A-19-4)
Rights ManagementPermission to reproduce this image must be requested from the State Historical Society of North Dakota.
Ordering InformationTo order a reproduction, inquire about the collection, or provide information about an image, please email Emily E. Schultz at
Digital IDws175A194
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